Gestalt therapy

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Gestalt therapy is a form of psychotherapy. It is a way of treating people who feel ill at ease. It is based on the idea that it is best to experience what we feel "here and now" and not keep thinking about the past or worry about the future. The goal is to help clients become aware of his or her thoughts, behaviours, experiences, and feelings and to "own" or take responsibility for them.

It forms part of what is called humanistic psychology and was co-founded by Fritz Perls, Laura Perls and Paul Goodman in the 1940s-1950s.

At the center of Gestalt therapy is the idea of "awareness" (knowing). The person being helped is encouraged to know his or her own feelings and behaviour, and the effect they have upon the world around them.

With Gestalt therapy, the patient is helped to see that they are trying to avoid feeling emotions from the present. Once the patient realizes this, he or she can begin to get better.